With the proliferation of online business listing sites, some business owners question the value of advertising in a printed directory. After all, in the digital age most phonebooks are never opened at all, so wouldn’t advertising efforts be best spent elsewhere? That might be true if, in fact, print was as obsolete as they say, but The Shepherd’s Guide reports that the use of printed books is actually expanding.
They have been successfully distributing a business directory focused on connecting Christian customers to Christian-owned businesses for 34 years, and are still expanding. Their growth might be surprising, but according to Nielsen BookScan, sales for almost all printed books showed a 2.4% increase last year. From children’s books to novels, and in all formats, print books are becoming more popular even as the price of e-readers drops.
A large part of this resurgent and abiding popularity is the way readers now process information. People tend to browse digital screens, and have to do so repeatedly to get the same information they could retain more easily from reading a material object. This is especially important for textbooks, which a majority of students still prefer, and any kind of reference tool, including business directories. The counter-intuitive marking tools in today’s e-reading devices also help boost the popularity of paper. Instead of highlighting and hunting through menus to make a note, a user can simply stick a piece of paper into a book.
The Shepherd’s Guide in Towson, MD also maintains one of their Christian business directories on the web. Visit them online to browse, or to list your own business for free. You can also call them at (410) 821-7000 for more information.